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smithsonianmag:

The Evolution of the Treble Clef
The curving flourishes of music notation have always been something a mystery to me, although every day I, like many people, use other arcane symbols without thinking twice about it. The at (@) sign, the dollar sign ($) and the ampersand (&), for example, all function like ligatures or some sort of shorthand. They’ve been demystified by popular use in email, clues on “Wheel of Fortune,” and their inclusion on computer keyboards. But music notation is a semantic system that is entirely different from the written word; a non-spoken alphabet of pitch and rhythm. So, with apologies to the more musically inclined reader, I looked into the origin of the treble clef and the answer was quite simple. The treble clef, the top symbol you see in the photo above, is also known as the G-clef, which gives you the first clue to its origin.
So for my own edification, if nothing else, let’s start with the basics. A clef is a sign placed on a music staff that indicates what pitch is represented by each line and space on the staff. The history of Western musical notation describes an effort toward the development a simple, symbolic representations of pitch and rhythm. It begins near the end of the 9th century when notation for the Plainsong of the Western Church, better known as Gregorian Chant, was first recorded with “neumes”. These were simple dashes or dots above lyrics that indicated a relative change in pitch. At the end of the 10th century, musical scribes increased the precision of his early notation by introducing a horizontal line to indicate a base pitch (see above image). The pitch of this line was indicated by a letter at its start – typically  F or C and, as higher range songs become more common, G. Neumes were no longer relative only to one another, but to a standard. This was the beginning of the musical staff.
Continue reading at Smithsonian.com

smithsonianmag:

The Evolution of the Treble Clef

The curving flourishes of music notation have always been something a mystery to me, although every day I, like many people, use other arcane symbols without thinking twice about it. The at (@) sign, the dollar sign ($) and the ampersand (&), for example, all function like ligatures or some sort of shorthand. They’ve been demystified by popular use in email, clues on “Wheel of Fortune,” and their inclusion on computer keyboards. But music notation is a semantic system that is entirely different from the written word; a non-spoken alphabet of pitch and rhythm. So, with apologies to the more musically inclined reader, I looked into the origin of the treble clef and the answer was quite simple. The treble clef, the top symbol you see in the photo above, is also known as the G-clef, which gives you the first clue to its origin.

So for my own edification, if nothing else, let’s start with the basics. A clef is a sign placed on a music staff that indicates what pitch is represented by each line and space on the staff. The history of Western musical notation describes an effort toward the development a simple, symbolic representations of pitch and rhythm. It begins near the end of the 9th century when notation for the Plainsong of the Western Church, better known as Gregorian Chant, was first recorded with “neumes”. These were simple dashes or dots above lyrics that indicated a relative change in pitch. At the end of the 10th century, musical scribes increased the precision of his early notation by introducing a horizontal line to indicate a base pitch (see above image). The pitch of this line was indicated by a letter at its start – typically  F or C and, as higher range songs become more common, G. Neumes were no longer relative only to one another, but to a standard. This was the beginning of the musical staff.

Continue reading at Smithsonian.com

historicalheroines:

Lise Meitner helped make one of the most important discoveries of the 19th century, and yet her male partner got all the credit for their work. Despite the fact that she had to flee Austria in 1938 due to the Nazi annexation, she continued her work and persevered through persecution and sexism.
The inscription on her tombstone, which was written by her nephew Otto Frisch (who helped her discover and name nuclear fission), reads “Lise Meitner: a physicist who never lost her humanity.”

historicalheroines:

Lise Meitner helped make one of the most important discoveries of the 19th century, and yet her male partner got all the credit for their work. Despite the fact that she had to flee Austria in 1938 due to the Nazi annexation, she continued her work and persevered through persecution and sexism.

The inscription on her tombstone, which was written by her nephew Otto Frisch (who helped her discover and name nuclear fission), reads “Lise Meitner: a physicist who never lost her humanity.”

penguinsweaters:

Jeanette Rankin was the first woman elected to Congress (on November 7, 1916) at a time when women lacked suffrage on a national level.  While in office she did many things, her efforts included work on the 19th Amendment (ensuring a woman’s right to vote), giving married women citizenship separate from their husbands and legislation on government-sponsored instruction for pregnant and nursing women.

However, she was a passionate pacifist and when she (along with 49 other representatives) voted against the United States’ entry into World War I many believed it meant women were unable to be national leaders and she was not reelected and left Congress at the end of her single term.

That was not the end of her life in politics though, running primarily on an anti-war platform she won reelection to the House in 1940 where she shortly was asked to vote again on whether or not the US should enter a world war.  Sticking to her beliefs, despite the majority of American’s outrage over Pearl Harbor, she again voted against war, famously saying, “As a woman I can’t go to war, and I refuse to send anyone else,” an act that ended her political career.

She continued to advocate pacifism through the rest of her life and even led a march on Washington in her eighties to protest the war in Vietnam.  Jeannette Rankin died in 1973 at the age of 93 and will always be remembered for her tireless work for women’s suffrage, her pacifist beliefs and for being a groundbreaking legislator, as both the first woman in Congress and the only person to vote against both world wars.

Source 1, 2, 3

penguinsweaters:

Jeanette Rankin was the first woman elected to Congress (on November 7, 1916) at a time when women lacked suffrage on a national level. While in office she did many things, her efforts included work on the 19th Amendment (ensuring a woman’s right to vote), giving married women citizenship separate from their husbands and legislation on government-sponsored instruction for pregnant and nursing women.

However, she was a passionate pacifist and when she (along with 49 other representatives) voted against the United States’ entry into World War I many believed it meant women were unable to be national leaders and she was not reelected and left Congress at the end of her single term.

That was not the end of her life in politics though, running primarily on an anti-war platform she won reelection to the House in 1940 where she shortly was asked to vote again on whether or not the US should enter a world war. Sticking to her beliefs, despite the majority of American’s outrage over Pearl Harbor, she again voted against war, famously saying, “As a woman I can’t go to war, and I refuse to send anyone else,” an act that ended her political career.

She continued to advocate pacifism through the rest of her life and even led a march on Washington in her eighties to protest the war in Vietnam. Jeannette Rankin died in 1973 at the age of 93 and will always be remembered for her tireless work for women’s suffrage, her pacifist beliefs and for being a groundbreaking legislator, as both the first woman in Congress and the only person to vote against both world wars.

Source 1, 2, 3

fastcompany:

The Top 10 Smartest Cities In North America
Some cities are adding high-tech infrastructure. Some are implementing revolutionary sustainability plans. Others are fostering innovative business and science developments. But which city combines these qualities and others to be the smartest city? A few weeks ago, Co.Exist published a ranking of European smart cities (A global smart city ranking was published earlier this year). Now we are publishing the top 10 cities in North America.
The rankings are based on a device I developed called the Smart Cities Wheel, which contains six key components of smart cities and three key drivers for each component. 
1. Boston 
2. San Francisco 
3. Seattle 
4. Vancouver 
5. New York City 
6. Washington, D.C. 
7. Toronto 
8. Chicago 
9. Los Angeles
 
10. Montreal 
Click here for the full story.

fastcompany:

The Top 10 Smartest Cities In North America

Some cities are adding high-tech infrastructure. Some are implementing revolutionary sustainability plans. Others are fostering innovative business and science developments. But which city combines these qualities and others to be the smartest city? A few weeks ago, Co.Exist published a ranking of European smart cities (A global smart city ranking was published earlier this year). Now we are publishing the top 10 cities in North America.

1. Boston image

2. San Francisco image

3. Seattle image

4. Vancouver image

5. New York City image

6. Washington, D.C. image

7. Toronto image

8. Chicago image

9. Los Angeles

 image

10. Montreal image

Click here for the full story.

fastcompany:

6 Simple Rituals To Reach Your Potential Every Day
This past weekend I had the opportunity to speak with my friend Mike Del Ponte, who resembles the character of Joe. Today he launches a Kickstarter campaign for his company Soma, which aims to revolutionize the water industry using sustainable design. (It’s awesome. Check it out.) Surprised by how cool, calm, and collected Mike was so close to launch, I asked him what his secret is.
“Every day I need physical energy, mental clarity, and emotional balance to tackle everything that comes my way,” Mike said. “Self-care is the secret to performing at the highest level.”
Here are the six simple rituals he uses to perform at his highest, which you too can begin implementing right away:
1. Drink a glass of water when you wake up. Your body loses water while you sleep, so you’re naturally dehydrated in the morning. A glass of water when you wake helps start your day fresh. When do you drink your first glass of water each day?
2. Define your top 3. Every morning Mike asks himself, “What are the top three most important tasks that I will complete today?” He prioritizes his day accordingly and doesn’t sleep until the Top 3 are complete. What’s your “Top 3” today?
3. The 50/10 Rule. Solo-task and do more faster by working in 50/10 increments. Use a timer to work for 50 minutes on only one important task with 10 minute breaks in between. Mike spends his 10 minutes getting away from his desk, going outside, calling friends, meditating, or grabbing a glass of water. What’s your most important task for the next 50 minutes?
4. Move and sweat daily. Regular movement keeps us healthy and alert. It boosts energy and mood, and relieves stress. Most mornings you’ll find Mike in a CrossFit or a yoga class. How will you sweat today?
5. Express gratitude. Gratitude fosters happiness, which is why Mike keeps a gratitude journal. Every morning, he writes out at least five things he’s thankful for. In times of stress, he’ll pause and reflect on 10 things he’s grateful for. What are you grateful for today?
6. Reflect daily. Bring closure to your day through 10 minutes of reflection. Mike asks himself, “What went well?” and “What needs improvement?” So… what went well today? How can you do more of it?
Do you have any other tips or practices? 

fastcompany:

6 Simple Rituals To Reach Your Potential Every Day

This past weekend I had the opportunity to speak with my friend Mike Del Ponte, who resembles the character of Joe. Today he launches a Kickstarter campaign for his company Soma, which aims to revolutionize the water industry using sustainable design. (It’s awesome. Check it out.) Surprised by how cool, calm, and collected Mike was so close to launch, I asked him what his secret is.

“Every day I need physical energy, mental clarity, and emotional balance to tackle everything that comes my way,” Mike said. “Self-care is the secret to performing at the highest level.”

Here are the six simple rituals he uses to perform at his highest, which you too can begin implementing right away:

1. Drink a glass of water when you wake up. Your body loses water while you sleep, so you’re naturally dehydrated in the morning. A glass of water when you wake helps start your day fresh. When do you drink your first glass of water each day?

2. Define your top 3. Every morning Mike asks himself, “What are the top three most important tasks that I will complete today?” He prioritizes his day accordingly and doesn’t sleep until the Top 3 are complete. What’s your “Top 3” today?

3. The 50/10 Rule. Solo-task and do more faster by working in 50/10 increments. Use a timer to work for 50 minutes on only one important task with 10 minute breaks in between. Mike spends his 10 minutes getting away from his desk, going outside, calling friends, meditating, or grabbing a glass of water. What’s your most important task for the next 50 minutes?

4. Move and sweat daily. Regular movement keeps us healthy and alert. It boosts energy and mood, and relieves stress. Most mornings you’ll find Mike in a CrossFit or a yoga class. How will you sweat today?

5. Express gratitude. Gratitude fosters happiness, which is why Mike keeps a gratitude journal. Every morning, he writes out at least five things he’s thankful for. In times of stress, he’ll pause and reflect on 10 things he’s grateful for. What are you grateful for today?

6. Reflect daily. Bring closure to your day through 10 minutes of reflection. Mike asks himself, “What went well?” and “What needs improvement?” So… what went well today? How can you do more of it?

Do you have any other tips or practices? 

The Top 10 Most Startling Facts About People of Color and Criminal Justice in the United States »

sinidentidades:

1. While people of color make up about 30 percent of the United States’ population, they account for 60 percent of those imprisoned. The prison population grew by 700 percent from 1970 to 2005, a rate that is outpacing crime and population rates. The incarceration rates disproportionately impact men of color: 1 in every 15 African American men and 1 in every 36 Hispanic men are incarcerated in comparison to 1 in every 106 white men.

2. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, one in three black men can expect to go to prison in their lifetime. Individuals of color have a disproportionate number of encounters with law enforcement, indicating that racial profiling continues to be a problem. A report by the Department of Justice found that blacks and Hispanics were approximately three times more likely to be searched during a traffic stop than white motorists. African Americans were twice as likely to be arrested and almost four times as likely to experience the use of force during encounters with the police.

3. Students of color face harsher punishments in school than their white peers, leading to a higher number of youth of color incarcerated. Black and Hispanic students represent more than 70 percent of those involved in school-related arrests or referrals to law enforcement. Currently, African Americans make up two-fifths and Hispanics one-fifth of confined youth today.

4. According to recent data by the Department of Education, African American students are arrested far more often than their white classmates. The data showed that 96,000 students were arrested and 242,000 referred to law enforcement by schools during the 2009-10 school year. Of those students, black and Hispanic students made up more than 70 percent of arrested or referred students. Harsh school punishments, from suspensions to arrests, have led to high numbers of youth of color coming into contact with the juvenile-justice system and at an earlier age.

5. African American youth have higher rates of juvenile incarceration and are more likely to be sentenced to adult prison. According to the Sentencing Project, even though African American juvenile youth are about 16 percent of the youth population, 37 percent of their cases are moved to criminal court and 58 percent of African American youth are sent to adult prisons.

6. As the number of women incarcerated has increased by 800 percent over the last three decades, women of color have been disproportionately represented. While the number of women incarcerated is relatively low, the racial and ethnic disparities are startling. African American women are three times more likely than white women to be incarcerated, while Hispanic women are 69 percent more likely than white women to be incarcerated.

7. The war on drugs has been waged primarily in communities of color where people of color are more likely to receive higher offenses. According to the Human Rights Watch, people of color are no more likely to use or sell illegal drugs than whites, but they have higher rate of arrests. African Americans comprise 14 percent of regular drug users but are 37 percent of those arrested for drug offenses. From 1980 to 2007 about one in three of the 25.4 million adults arrested for drugs was African American.

8. Once convicted, black offenders receive longer sentences compared to white offenders. The U.S. Sentencing Commission stated that in the federal system black offenders receive sentences that are 10 percent longer than white offenders for the same crimes. The Sentencing Project reports that African Americans are 21 percent more likely to receive mandatory-minimum sentences than white defendants and are 20 percent more like to be sentenced to prison.

9. Voter laws that prohibit people with felony convictions to vote disproportionately impact men of color. An estimated 5.3 million Americans are denied the right to vote based on a past felony conviction. Felony disenfranchisement is exaggerated by racial disparities in the criminal-justice system, ultimately denying 13 percent of African American men the right to vote. Felony-disenfranchisement policies have led to 11 states denying the right to vote to more than 10 percent of their African American population.

10. Studies have shown that people of color face disparities in wage trajectory following release from prison. Evidence shows that spending time in prison affects wage trajectories with a disproportionate impact on black men and women. The results show no evidence of racial divergence in wages prior to incarceration; however, following release from prison, wages grow at a 21 percent slower rate for black former inmates compared to white ex-convicts. A number of states have bans on people with certain convictions working in domestic health-service industries such as nursing, child care, and home health care—areas in which many poor women and women of color are disproportionately concentrated.